Late Friday, Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi emerged from what I’m sure was an absolutely excruciating meeting with Donald Trump who, as you’re aware, is still holding out for $5 billion in funding for a barrier he wants to build on the southern border.
Long story short, Schumer informed the public that not only do Democrats and the President remain far apart on resolving the shutdown, Trump actually said he’s willing to keep the government closed for “months and maybe even years” if that’s what it takes to extort wall money from taxpayers.
Following Schumer’s brief remarks, Trump held his own press conference and it was even more otherworldly than his Wednesday cabinet meeting during which, you’ll recall, the President elaborated on everything from Syria to the Soviet Union while seated in front of a poster-sized print out of the Game of Thrones meme he had made to celebrate the reimposition of sanctions on Iran.
As usual, we’ll present the clips from Trump’s shutdown presser in no particular order, although we’ll start with what was perhaps the most absurd diatribe during which the President explained how “coyotes” drive across the border with “three or four women with tape on their mouths and tied up … in the back of a van.”
So there’s that. And here’s Trump responding to a reporter who asked if he’s still (as he promised he would be midway through last month) “proud to own the shutdown”:
Got that? Now it’s “not called a shutdown.”
Trump also elaborated (at length) on why “steel” is better than “concrete” in the course of explaining the recent rebranding effort (i.e., “wall” versus “steel slats”).
Trump also claimed (without evidence) that terrorists are coming in through the southern border and “making a left”. If you can make sense of this, please do drop us an e-mail and let us know.
Asked if he’s worried about impeachment, Trump essentially asked how it’s possible that the greatest president in the history of the republic could possibly be thrown out of office (no collusion!).
When pressed on the above-mentioned “steel” versus concrete debate, Trump launched into an absolutely crazy tirade during which he admonished a reporter for not understanding that steel is the strongest substance known to man.
On Apple’s guidance cut, Trump basically doesn’t care. He says China is the “main beneficiary of Apple”, a ridiculous contention that makes no sense whatsoever.
And, in what will invariably be the headline-grabber, Trump said he may grant himself emergency powers, overriding Congress in the course of getting his steel/concrete/fence/wall/slats/barrier built.
In case it isn’t clear enough, this was, hands down, the most unhinged, surreal press conference Donald Trump has ever held as President – and that includes the Charlottesville debacle and the George Washington spectacle.
As we’re fond of putting it, the English language is not a sufficient tool to convey how bizarre this was, which I suppose is fitting because after all, English isn’t a language Trump speaks fluently.